Wacker expands silicone elastomer capacity in South Korea

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Wacker Chemie AG is expanding its silicone elastomer production capacity in Jincheon, South Korea, as per the company's press release.

The new facilities will include production plants for silicone sealants, specialty silicones and liquid silicone rubber. At the same time, existing production units in Jincheon will be transferred to the new site.

Investments for the expansion will total around EUR16 million. Construction work will officially start end of July, production is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2018. The new expansion project is Wacker’s response to growing regional demand for silicone elastomers in the construction, electronics and automotive industries.

Growth on the silicone sealants market in Asia is exceptionally strong. Expanding sealant production in Jincheon, South Korea, will benefit Wacker customers across the entire region.

The new production site is located in Jincheon, roughly 100 km southeast of Seoul. "The Asian market for sealants and encapsulants is growing at an incredible rate," noted WACKER Executive Board member Auguste Willems. "In order to meet increasing demand over the long term, we have decided to significantly increase our production capacity in Jincheon. In this way, we intend to secure and continue expanding our position as a leading silicone manufacturer in the region and profit from Asia’s strong growth."

As MRC wrote before, in 2013, Wacker Chemie AG officially launched its new production plant for ethylene-vinyl-acetate copolymer (EVA) dispersions at its Ulsan site in South Korea. The additional 40,000 tonnes from the second reactor line increases the site's EVA-dispersion capacity to a total of 90,000 tonnes per year. The production capacity of the site had, thus, almost doubled, making the plant complex one of the biggest of its kind in South Korea.

Wacker Chemie AG is a worldwide operating company in the chemical business, founded 1914. The company is controlled by the Wacker-family holding more than 50 percent of the shares. The corporation is operating more than 25 production sites in Europe, Asia, and the Americas. The product range includes silicone rubbers, polymer products like ethylene vinyl acetate redispersible polymer powder, chemical materials, polysilicon and wafers for semiconductor industry.

Jam Petrochemical Plant reaches output capacity

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Jam Petrochemical Plant, a leading polypropylene (PP) producer in Iran, has approached its nominal output capacity of PP, said a senior company official in a report, said TradeArabia.

The company’s production reached 48,000 tonnes in the two months to May 20, Kambiz Mirkarimi, CEO of Jam Petrochemical Plant, was quoted as saying in an Iran Daily News report.

He said the plant has exported 21,000 tonnes of its products while selling the remainder in the domestic market.

Mirkarimi said that the company earned USD20 million in export revenues.

He noted that the plant managed to raise its output due to the boost in feedstock provided by upstream petrochemical suppliers.

Jam Petrochemical Plant produces 300,000 tonnes of polyethylene (PE) annually, added the report.

As MRC reported earlier, the CEO of France's Total, Europe’s third-largest oil company, said in April 2016 that the company's priority on getting back into Iran's energy sector was gas and petrochemicals.

Petronas seeking to raise USD7.2 bln for Rapid project

МОSCOW (MRC) -- Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) is seeking to raise USD7.2 bln (RM29.5 bln) for its Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development (Rapid) project in one of the largest project financings from Asia in recent years, said Justreadonline.

The state-owned oil company has asked banks for underwriting commitments of at least USD500 mln (RM2 bln) by next week. The project in the southern state of Johor is set to be Malaysia’s largest liquid-based green-field downstream development. It will consist of a 300,000-bpd refinery and petrochemical complex, with a combined chemical output capacity of 7.7 mln tpa.

A banking source confirmed to Reuters that Petronas has issued a request for proposals for the loan to be used to finance the USD16 bln (RM65.5 bln) Rapid project.

Petronas did not immediately reply to requests for comment.

The project in the southern state of Johor is set to be Malaysia’s largest liquid-based green-field downstream development. It will consist of a 300,000-barrels-per-day refinery and petrochemical complex, with a combined chemical output capacity of 7.7 million metric tonnes per year.

As MRC informed earlier, in December 2015, Petronas awarded the Johor port operatorship for its Refinery and Petrochemicals Integrated Development (RAPID) project to Johor Port Bhd (JPB). As the port operator, JPB will manage the operations and logistics functions at the material offloading facility (MOLF) for Petronas’ Refinery and Petrochemicals Integrated Development (RAPID) project in Pengerang.

Petronas plans to build a C6-based metallocene linear LDPE plant and a low density polyethylene (LDPE)/ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) swing plant at its greenfield integrated refinery and petrochemical complex in southern Johor state by mid-2019. The proposed metallocene LLDPE will have a capacity of 350,000 tpa, while the LDPE/EVA will have a capacity of about 150,000 tpa. The two plants are part of Petronas' planned Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development project in Pengerang at Johor. RAPID includes a 300,000 bpd refinery and a petrochemical complex with a 3 million tpa steam cracker, and is expected to come onstream in mid-2019. The petrochemical complex will have the capacity to produce 7.7 million tpa of petrochemical products.

Petronas, short for Petroliam Nasional Berhad, is a Malaysian oil and gas company wholly owned by the Government of Malaysia. The Group is engaged in a wide spectrum of petroleum activities, including upstream exploration and production of oil and gas to downstream oil refining; marketing and distribution of petroleum products; trading; gas processing and liquefaction; gas transmission pipeline network operations; marketing of liquefied natural gas; petrochemical manufacturing and marketing; shipping; automotive engineering; and property investment.


Wison Engineering breaks ground on UAE ethylene project

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Wison Engineering (Shanghai), a chemical engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) management and technology provider, says that it has begun its first EPC project on-site in the United Arab Emirates, said Energyglobal.

The project, west of Abu Dhabi, is a part of the ethylene plant expansion of a provider of plastics products and services, Wison says. Wison's contract covers engineering design, procurement, and construction services. The project is scheduled to be mechanically complete in October 2017.

The project not only signals the company's breakthrough into the core market of the Middle East but also showcases Wison Engineering's wide recognition among project owners in the Middle Eastern region. To offer more customized services to local project owners, the Company has established a project execution center and set up a local design, procurement and project management team in Abu Dhabi, which will allow the company to allocate its resources more efficiently and respond faster to local project needs.

As MRC informed earlier,Wison Engineering announced that a 300000 tpa methanol-to-olefin (MTO) project (the YangMei Project), undertaken by Wison Engineering for Shandong YangMei Hengtong Chemicals Company Limited under an EPC contract and employing its proprietary olefin separation technology, has passed the performance test for olefin separation unit organized by the client with its excellent operation performance after 10-month steady operation.

PVC production in Russia down 6% in Jan-May 2016

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Russia's overall production of unmixed polyvinyl chloride (PVC) dropped in the first five months of 2016 by 6% year on year, totalling 310,500 tonnes. SayanskKhimplast and Kaustik (Volgograd) accounted for the negative increase in the output, according to MRC ScanPlast report.

Last month's production of unmixed PVC in Russia decreased to 53,300 tonnes from 56,600 tonnes in April. The reduced May figure was caused by a scheduled shutdown for maintenance at Kaustik (Volgograd). Overall PVC production totalled 310,500 tonnes in January-May 2016, compared to 332,000 tonnes a year earlier. RusVinyl increased its output by 42%, however, this factor was offset by SayanskKhimplast's outage and Kaustik's lower production.

The structure of PVC output by producers looked the following wasy over the stated period.

RusVinyl (SIBUR and SolVin's joint venture) produced about 27,200 tonnes of PVC in May, 1,800 tonnes of which were emulsion polyvinyl chloride (EPVC), versus 28,500 tonnes a month earlier. The Nizhny Novgorod plant's overall output of resin reached 133,300 tonnes in the first five months of the year, whereas the same figure was 88,600 tonnes a year earlier.

Bashkir Soda Company (BSC) produced 21,500 tonnes of suspension polyvinyl chloride (SPVC) last month, whereas this figure was slightly less than 20,500 tonnes a month earlier. Overall production of resin at the Bashkir plant was 105,900 tonnes in January-May 2016, up by 1% year on year.

Kaustik (Volgograd) shut down its production for maintenance in the second half of May, therefore, the plant's May output of SPVC was slightly over 4,600 tonnes, compared to 7,600 tonnes a month earlier. The plant's overall output of resin reached 36,000 tonnes in the first five months of the year, down by 10% year on year.

SayanskKhimplast was forced to shut down its PVC production in mid-February due to the outage at Angarsk Polymer Plant's ethylene unit. According to preliminary information, the shutdown at the plant's PVC production capacities will last until end-June, the resumption of resin production is scheduled for early July. SayanskKhimplast's SVPC production totalled 35,300 tonnes in January-May 2016, whereas this figure reached 99,000 tonnes over the same period of 2015.